Proposed Regulation Requiring Mediation in Certain Workers’ Compensation Claims
The South Carolina General Assembly has approved the proposed Regulation requiring mediation in some Workers’ Compensation claims. The new Regulation will take effect around June 28, 2013.
July/August hearing requests are already being handled by the Commission as if the regulation were in effect. This regulation requires mediation in admitted claims involving an allegation of permanent and total disability, occupational disease, third party liens, mental/mental injury and the Federal Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act. The regulation also requires mediation of contested death claims and claims where multiple employees allege injuries with the same employer. The regulation gives the Commission the authority to order mediation for any claim. As always, the parties can agree to mediate any claim, and on Forms 50, 51 and 21, the parties can elect whether they wish to have the claim mediated prior to hearing.
All parties are waiting to see exactly how the Commission interprets and implements the regulation.